52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks · Sunday afternoon Genealogy Fun

52 Ancestors #24 Father’s Day/ Sunday Afternoon Genealogy Fun – What Did Your Father Love to Do?

Each week on Randy Seaver’s Genea-musings blog he has a post for Saturday night Genealogy fun. Because of the time difference, I have called my series Sunday Afternoon Genealogy Fun. This week the mission was:

1) It’s Father’s Day in the USA on Sunday, so let’s talk about our fathers.

2)  What did your father really like to do in his work or spare time?  Did he have hobbies, or a workshop, or did he like sports, or reading, or watching TV?

3)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment on this post, or in a Facebook or Google+ post.

Since the topic in Amy Johnson Crow’s 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks for Week 24 is Father’s Day, I have decided to use this post for this week’s 52 Ancestors post as well.

My dad, Ivon Walter Whimpey, was born 21 January 1923, and died 16 December 2009.  He had 7 daughters, two from his first marriage, and five with my mum.  I was the youngest, so growing up my dad was kept busy working to provide for us, and since mum didn’t drive, driving us around.  It didn’t give him a lot of leisure time, but what time he did have he spent as follows:

Gardening When I was young we had a chicken coop in the backyard, so dad didn’t do very much gardening back then, just a little patch here or there, and the main crops he grew were silver beet and rhubarb (I never eat these now, as I got sick of them when I was growing up, and never liked them very much anyway).  After he had to get rid of the chicken coop, he now had a bigger area to grow vegetables, and strawberries.  After my sisters and I grew too big for the swing, and the top bar broke, dad used it as a frame for tomatoes.

Old swing 1977
The old swing dad used as a frame for tomatoes, and other climbing plants

Another vegetable I remember dad growing was zucchini.  The zucchini I buy in the stores now are about 4 times smaller than the zucchini dad used to grow.   After dad retired and mum and dad moved to Wonthaggi, they moved to a house with a big yard, so dad was kept busy in his retirement maintaining the garden.  After mum died, dad remarried, and he and his new wife went to live at her house, as the garden there was much easier to manage, but dad still had an area where he could keep growing his vegetables

Dad's vegetable garden at Wonthaggi
Dad’s vegetable garden at Wonthaggi

Fishing Dad used to get three weeks holidays from work over the Christmas (summer) holidays, and most years we would go down to Kilcunda.  Dad was never much interested in going swimming while we were there, but he did love to go fishing at low tide from the rocks.  After he retired, he found himself too busy to go fishing!

Sports When he was young, dad played football (Australian Rules and rugby), soccer, and cricket.  When I was growing up he was either too busy working or being a taxi service for the family, so he would only play cricket when we were camping at Kilcunda, and everyone on the campsite would join in a game. Although he didn’t play anymore, Dad would watch the cricket matches on TV. In Winter, on Saturdays, he would listen to the football on the radio, usually in the car while he was waiting for us girls to finish playing netball, and we would watch the replays on a Saturday night.  Dad was a Collingwood fan.  Occasionally, dad and I would go to a game, usually when Collingwood was playing at VFL park, because it was closer, and easier to get a parking spot.

Other leisure activities Growing up, I remember the radio was nearly always on, and tuned to a station that played a mixture of old songs, and current hits (I think it was 3DB).  In the evenings, dad would watch TV, and read books.  During the holidays, he would play card and board games with the rest of the family.  Dad was also active in our local Methodist/Uniting church.

Background of featured image is a Photo by Wu Jianxiong on Unsplash